Wednesday, June 19, 2024
Wednesday, June 19, 2024
HomeSide EffectsIs Narcolepsy A Symptom Of Parkinson's

Is Narcolepsy A Symptom Of Parkinson’s

Hypocretin May Regulate Your Levels Of Happiness

sleep disorders- Insomnia,Sleep apnea,Parasomnias,restless leg syndrome,narcolepsy,symptoms,causes

A new study, which used epilepsy patients who had special electrodes implanted in their brains that could monitor hypocretin levels, found that levels of the neurotransmitter soared during positive emotions, anger, social interactions and upon awakening.1

Hypocretin has been previously associated with reward-seeking behaviors, and the researchers suggested it may have a very specific role in human arousal and happiness as well. The studys lead author, Dr. Jerome Siegel, told the New York Times:2

This shows that hypocretin is related to a particular kind of arousal There is an arousal system in the brain whose function is keeping you awake for pleasure, to get rewards. It is related to positive effects, and in its absence you have a deficit in pleasure seeking.

This explains why people with narcolepsy, who are lacking hypocretin, also commonly suffer from depression. Interestingly, it also suggests there may be other arousal systems in your brain, driven by different brain chemicals, that may be in charge of regulating other specific emotions.

A Warning About Hypocretin

If an important new biological pathway is discovered you can bet your bottom dollar that the drug companies will not be far behind to manipulate that pathway in some way that will not correct the problem, but merely relieve the symptoms and make them a boatload of money. And that is precisely what has happened.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has accepted a new drug application for Suvorexant, a new insomnia medication made by Merck.3 This is the same company that brought you Vioxx, which killed 60,000 before being pulled from the market.

The new drug works by targeting hypocretin, temporarily blocking it to help you fall asleep, or, as the New York Times put it, essentially causing narcolepsy for a night.4

The concern is that if reduced hypocretin may be responsible for causing depression in narcoleptics, could it also cause depression, or interfere with mood, in healthy people using the hypocretin-blocking drug Suvorexant? So far Merck claims no connection has been found, but there is likely reason for caution:5

The initial reports are rosy, Dr. Siegel told the New York Times, But they come from a drug company with an enormous investment. And there is a long list of drugs acting on the brain whose severe problems were only identified after millions of people were taking them.

Children With Narcolepsy Are Especially At Risk For Delays In Diagnosis

More than half of people with narcolepsy say that their symptoms started before age 18. However, it can take as long as 10 or more years to get an accurate diagnosis, and some people may have about 6 doctor visits before their symptoms are recognized as narcolepsy. Sadly, in children and adolescents, narcolepsy can often be mistaken for laziness or lack of motivation.

Undiagnosednarcolepsy can contribute to problemsnot only in childhood but throughout a persons life.

Children can suffer many years without a diagnosis.

Want more information about

Don’t Miss: Does Parkinson’s Disease Cause Pain

The Treatment Of Sleep Disorders In Parkinsons Disease: From Research To Clinical Practice

  • 1Department of Biomedical and Neuromotor Sciences, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy
  • 2Bellaria Hospital, IRCCS Institute of Neurological Sciences of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

Sleep disorders are one of the most frequent non-motor symptoms of Parkinsons disease , usually increasing in frequency over the course of the disease and disability progression. SDs include nocturnal and diurnal manifestations such as insomnia, REM sleep behavior disorder, and excessive daytime sleepiness. The causes of SDs in PD are numerous, including the neurodegeneration process itself, which can disrupt the networks regulating the sleepwake cycle and deplete a large number of cerebral amines possibly playing a role in the initiation and maintenance of sleep. Despite the significant prevalence of SDs in PD patients, few clinical trials on SDs treatment have been conducted. Our aim is to critically review the principal therapeutic options for the most common SDs in PD. The appropriate diagnosis and treatment of SDs in PD can lead to the consolidation of nocturnal sleep, the enhancement of daytime alertness, and the amelioration of the quality of life of the patients.

Conflict Of Interest Statement


GL received honoraria for participation in clinical trial as sub-investigator from UCB Pharma PC received honoraria for speaking engagements or consulting activities from Allergan Italia, Lundbeck Italy, UCB Pharma S.p.A, Chiesi Farmaceutici, AbbVie srl, Eli Lilly and Company, Zambon FP received honoraria for speaking engagements or consulting activities from Sanofi and Bial. The other authors declare no conflict of interest.

Don’t Miss: How Does Levodopa Help Parkinson’s

How Is Daytime Sleepiness Treated

Consider making certain lifestyle modifications, such as:

  • Establish good sleep hygiene, including a set bedtime and wake-up time.
  • Get exposure to adequate light during the day and darkness at night.
  • Remember indoor lighting may not be sufficient to promote a normal circadian rhythm.
  • Avoid sedentary activities during the day.
  • Participate in activities outside the home. They may help provide stimulation to prevent daytime dozing.
  • Get physical exercise appropriate to your level of functioning, which may also promote daytime wakefulness. Strenuous exercise, however, should be avoided six hours before sleep.
  • Do NOT drive while sleepy if you experience excessive daytime sleepiness. Motor vehicle accidents increase during periods of drowsiness and may be associated with sudden onset of sleep .
  • Talk to your doctor about possibly decreasing the dosage of dopamine agonists if you experience daytime sleepiness or sleep attacks.
  • Talk to your doctor about decreasing stimulants like caffeine, modafinil and methylphenidate .

What Treatments Are Available

Although there is no cure for narcolepsy, some of the symptoms can be treated with medicines and lifestyle changes. When cataplexy is present, the loss of hypocretin is believed to be irreversible and lifelong. Excessive daytime sleepiness and cataplexy can be controlled in most individuals with medications.


Also Check: Parkinson’s Cognitive Impairment

Too Little Sleep Wreaks Havoc On Your Insulin Levels Leads To Food Cravings

Sleep deprivation tends to lead to food cravings, particularly for sweet and starchy foods. Researchers have suggested that these sugar cravings stem from the fact that your brain is fueled by glucose therefore, when lack of sleep occurs, and your brain is unable to properly respond to insulin your brain becomes desperate for carbohydrates to keep going. If youre chronically sleep deprived, consistently giving in to these sugar cravings will virtually guarantee that youll gain weight.

Getting too little sleep also dramatically decreases the sensitivity of your insulin receptors, which will raise your insulin levels. This too is a surefire way to gain weight, as the elevated insulin will seriously impair your bodys ability to burn and digest fat.

According to research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine,7 after four nights of sleep deprivation , study participants insulin sensitivity was 16 percent lower, while their fat cells insulin sensitivity was 30 percent lower, and rivaled levels seen in those with diabetes or obesity.

Narcolepsy One Of The Core Part Of Parkinsons

Hypersomnia, Causes, Signs and Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment.

Yes, definitely. If you see the symptoms of narcolepsy you can understand why. There are many diseases that are interconnected. If you search it briefly you can be able to know.

When I searched about Parkinsons I was just shocked when I found many interconnected diseases. Narcolepsy is not just a single thing, there are many connected core diseases with narcolepsy. If you see from the first there are many core parts in narcolepsy like cataplexy, excessive sleeping disorder, Sleep paralysis, hallucination. Not every case but there some cases are available where those symptoms are available in Patients.

So, narcolepsy can be the core part of Parkinsons. You must have to aware of it. Because these starting points can be pushed you to the long.

Hi Robert, we just wanted to take a moment to welcome you to the community. We hope youll enjoy your time here, and please also feel welcome to take advantage of the resources on our website at the best!

Don’t Miss: Does Richard Blumenthal Have Parkinson’s

Loss Of Sense Of Smell Is Also Common

This may happen due to a temporary illness. But if it continues after an illness or happens without any illness attached to it Pay attention. Loss of smell could be an early sign and should be checked out.

This is quite common and while they may not notice, others around them will. They may be unable to detect body odor, smell smoke, or if something is burning or smell the difference between two items.

Time Perception In Narcolepsy In Comparison To Patients With Parkinson’s Disease And Healthy Controlsan Exploratory Study

University Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland


Rosita Poryazova MD, Department of Neurology, University Hospital Zurich, Frauenklinikstrasse 26, 8091 Zurich, Switzerland. Tel.: 41-44-255-1111 fax: 41-44-255-4429 e-mail:

University Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland


Rosita Poryazova MD, Department of Neurology, University Hospital Zurich, Frauenklinikstrasse 26, 8091 Zurich, Switzerland. Tel.: 41-44-255-1111 fax: 41-44-255-4429 e-mail:

Also Check: Is Parkinson’s Disease Fatal

What Research Is Being Done

The mission of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke is to seek fundamental knowledge about the brain and nervous system and to use that knowledge to reduce the burden of neurological disease. The NINDS is a component of the National Institutes of Health , the leading supporter of biomedical research in the world.

The NINDS, along with several other NIH Institutes and Centers, supports research on narcolepsy and other sleep disorders through grants to medical institutions across the country. Additionally, the NIHs National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute manages the National Center on Sleep Disorders Research , which coordinates Federal government sleep research activities, promotes doctoral and postdoctoral training programs, and educates the public and health care professionals about sleep disorders. For more information, visit the NCSDR website at

Immune systemAbnormalities in the immune system may play an important role in the development of narcolepsy. NINDS-sponsored scientists have demonstrated the presence of unusual immune system activity in people with narcolepsy. Further, strep throat and certain varieties of influenza are now thought to be triggers in some at-risk individuals. Other NINDS researchers are also working to understand why the immune system destroys hypocretin neurons in narcolepsy in the hopes of finding a way to prevent or cure the disorder.

Link Between Parkinson’s And Narcolepsy Discovered

Parkinson’s disease is well-known for its progression of motor disorders: stiffness, slowness, tremors, difficulties walking and talking. Less well known is that Parkinson’s shares other symptoms with narcolepsy, a sleep disorder characterized by sudden and uncontrollable episodes of deep sleep, severe fatigue and general sleep disorder. Now researchers think they know why — the two disorders share something in common: Parkinson’s disease patients have severe damage to the same small group of neurons whose loss causes narcolepsy.

Parkinson’s disease is well-known for its progression of motor disorders: stiffness, slowness, tremors, difficulties walking and talking. Less well known is that Parkinson’s shares other symptoms with narcolepsy, a sleep disorder characterized by sudden and uncontrollable episodes of deep sleep, severe fatigue and general sleep disorder.

Now a team of UCLA and Veterans Affairs researchers think they know why the two disorders share something in common: Parkinson’s disease patients have severe damage to the same small group of neurons whose loss causes narcolepsy. The findings suggest a different clinical course of treatment for people suffering with Parkinson’s that may ameliorate their sleep symptoms.

In fact, said Siegel, Parkinson’s disease is often preceded and accompanied by daytime sleep attacks, nocturnal insomnia, REM sleep disorder, hallucinations and depression. All of these symptoms are also present in narcolepsy.

Don’t Miss: Does John Flannery Have Parkinson’s

Daytime Sleepiness And Parkinsons Disease: The Contribution Of The Multiple Sleep Latency Test

1Pós-Graduação em Neuropsiquiatria e Ciências do Comportamento, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Recife, PE, Brazil

2Hospital das Clinicas, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Recife, PE, Brazil

Academic Editor:


Background. Sleep disorders are major nonmotor manifestations of patients with Parkinsons disease , and excessive daytime sleepiness is one of the most common symptoms. Objective. We reviewed a current literature concerning major factors that influence EDS in PD patients, using Multiple Sleep Latency Test . Methods. A Medline search found 23 studies. Results. The presence of EDS was observed in 12.7% to 47% in patients without complaints of daytime sleepiness and 47% to 66.7% with complaints of daytime sleepiness. Despite being recognized by several authors, major factors that influence EDS, such as severity of motor symptoms, use of dopaminergic medications, and associated sleep disturbances, presented contradictory data. . Available data suggest that the variability of the results may be related to the fact that it was conducted with a small sample size, not counting the neuropathological heterogeneity of the disease. Thus, before carrying out longitudinal studies with significant samples, careful analysis should be done by assigning a specific agent on the responsibility of EDS in PD patients.

1. Introduction

2. Materials and Methods

Following data extraction, we selected 23 studies, longitudinal and cross-sectional .

3. Results

4. Discussion

How Can I Help Research

The NINDS supports the NIH NeuroBioBank, a national resource for investigators using human post-mortem brain tissue and related biospecimens for their research to understand conditions of the nervous system. The NeuroBioBank serves as a central point of access to collections that span neurological, neuropsychiatric, and neurodevelopmental diseases and disorders. Tissue from individuals with narcolepsy is needed to enable scientists to study this disorder more intensely. Participating groups include brain and tissue repositories, researchers, NIH program staff, information technology experts, disease advocacy groups, and, most importantly, individuals seeking information about opportunities to donate. More information about NeuroBioBank and opportunities to donate tissue is available at .

Additionally, the NINDS supports genetic and immunological research in narcolepsy at Stanford University. Blood samples from individuals with narcolepsy can be sent by mail and are needed to enable scientists to study this disorder more intensely. Prospective donors may contact:

Stanford University Center for Narcolepsy450 Broadway Street

Office of Communications and Public LiaisonNational Institute of Neurological Disorders and StrokeNational Institutes of HealthBethesda, MD 20892

All NINDS-prepared information is in the public domain and may be freely copied. Credit to the NINDS or the NIH is appreciated.

Don’t Miss: Parkinson’s And Dopamine Deficiency

Figure 2 Keyword Enrichment

Representative keyword enrichment of the gene correlates of LRRK2, HLA-DQB1 and HCRT in the Hypothalamus, Dorsal Thalamus, Pons and Nucleus Subcoeruleus based on GO term classification. LRRK2 gene correlates HLA-DQB1 gene correlates HCRT gene correlates. X-axis, keyword categories Y-axis, frequency of occurrence.

The LRRK2 gene correlates have the highest frequency of the keyword categories. The highest represented categories are: transcription factor , insulin, behavior, learning, memory, locomotion , dopamine, Parkinson, and sleep and circadian processes .

The highest represented keyword categories for HLA-DQB1 are behavior, insulin, transcription factor, circadian, memory, dopamine, sleep , locomotion , and learning . The highest represented categories of HCRT are transcription factor, behavior, insulin, circadian, dopamine, Parkinson, memory, sleep, locomotion , and learning

Rem Sleep Behavioral Disorder

Narcolepsy–Does Your Child Have It?

Rapid eye movement, or REM, sleep is a normal part of the sleep cycle when people dream. Usually the only part of the body that moves during REM is the eyes, thus the name.

  • People with rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder do not have the normal relaxation of the muscles during their dreams. Therefore, they act out their dreams during REM sleep.
  • People with RBD may shout, kick their bed partner or grind their teeth. Sometimes, in moderate to severe RBD, people may have aggressive, violent behaviors, like getting out of bed and attacking their bed partner.
  • About half of people with PD suffer from RBD. It may develop after or along with the disease, but in most cases, it precedes the PD diagnosis by five to 10 years.

RBD Treatment

  • Consider making environmental adjustments to protect the person with RBD and bed partner from injury. This may include padding the floor, using bed rails or sleeping in separate rooms.
  • Clonazepam has been shown in large case series to improve RBD in 80 to 90 percent of cases. The dose of clonazepam required is low, usually from 0.5 mg to 1.0 mg. The adverse effects of clonazepam include nocturnal confusion, daytime sedation, and exacerbation of obstructive sleep apnea, if present. It is in generic form and not expensive.
  • Talk to your doctor about the over-the-counter sleep aid Melatonin. Doses up to 12 mg at night one hour before can improve RBD.

Also Check: Can U Die From Parkinson’s Disease

Sleep Deprivation Linked To Psychiatric Disorders

Getting back to the link between sleep, or lack of it, and mood, sleep deprivation is linked to psychiatric disorders such as anxiety and bipolar depression, while getting the right amount of sleep has been linked to positive personality characteristics such as optimism and greater self-esteem, as well as a greater ability to solve difficult problems.8

So theres no doubt about it: too little sleep can seriously impact your mood and your ability to be happy. If you feel well-rested in the morning, thats a good sign that your sleep habits are just fine. But if not, you might want to investigate your sleep patterns more closely.

How Is Narcolepsy Diagnosed

A clinical examination and detailed medical history are essential for diagnosis and treatment of narcolepsy. Individuals may be asked by their doctor to keep a sleep journal noting the times of sleep and symptoms over a one- to two-week period. Although none of the major symptoms are exclusive to narcolepsy, cataplexy is the most specific symptom and occurs in almost no other diseases.

A physical exam can rule out or identify other neurological conditions that may be causing the symptoms. Two specialized tests, which can be performed in a sleep disorders clinic, are required to establish a diagnosis of narcolepsy:

Don’t Miss: Does Susan Collins Have Parkinsons

Behavioral Approaches To Treatment

Behavioral approaches are non-medical forms of therapy, and there are multiple ways that they can be incorporated into the daily habits of people with narcolepsy.

  • Planning short naps: Because brief naps are refreshing for people with narcolepsy, budgeting time for naps during the day can reduce EDS. Accommodations at school or work may be necessary to make time for naps.
  • Having healthy sleep hygiene: To combat poor sleep at night, people with narcolepsy can benefit from good sleep habits. Good sleep hygiene includes a consistent sleep schedule , a sleep environment with minimal distractions and disruptions, and limited use of electronic devices before bed.
  • Avoiding alcohol and other sedatives: Any substance that contributes to sleepiness may worsen daytime narcolepsy symptoms.
  • Driving with caution: People with narcolepsy should talk with the doctor about safe driving. Napping before driving and avoiding long or monotonous drives are examples of measures to improve safety.
  • Eating a balanced diet: People with narcolepsy have a higher risk of obesity, which makes eating well an important part of their overall health.
  • Exercising: Being active can help prevent obesity and may contribute to improved sleep at night.
  • Seeking support: Support groups and mental health professionals can promote emotional health and counteract the risks of social withdrawal, depression, and anxiety in people with narcolepsy.


Popular Articles